Blind Atlas, the Anglo-American Manchester based band whom we introduced last year have released their long awaited debut album Kodiak Bear.
Their influences are wide and mixed ranging from Neil Young, Bob Dylan and the Rolling Stones to Calexico, Bonnie ‘Prince’ Billy and the Grateful Dead. Their music takes some of the best qualities of past alt-country & folk rock music giving them a classic feel with a contemporary twist. They put it all through the paces on this release.
Kodiak Bear provides variety, inventiveness as well as an album to kick back to and it is not short in its range of offerings: from the blues infused southern gothic ‘Iron Will‘ to up-beat alt-country ‘The ballad of uncertainty in the key of F‘ which features some lovely lap steel and vocals from Becky Stephens (The Pipettes and The Projectionists) who co-wrote the song. They are as at home on sparse arrangements such as the slow acoustic paced ‘Damned Words‘ to the blues rocking ‘4th Street‘ which includes some nice fiddle from Helen ‘Bels’ Temperley who duals along with lead guitar. Ross Thompson’s lead vocals carry the pace perfectly along with some great backing harmonies from the rest of the band…a stunning debut album!
Its refreshing to know that a band such as Blind Atlas can still take those classic qualities of the past re-invent them and make them sound so good. It’s no surprise that the likes of Bob Harris has also fallen under their spell, he got them in to record a session on his BBC Radio 2 show which played out yesterday. Be expecing a lot more from this band, they’ve got a lot more to show us yet!
New Video: These Days
Kodiak Bear is relesed on Fallen Swine Records